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Our team blends theory and practice and draws upon the research and policy expertise across Duke University to inform our evaluations and to disseminate new evidence to policymakers, donors and diverse stakeholders in order to inform decision-making. Our team has deep, on-the-ground knowledge and experience with a wide range of global health projects and thus we can offer research and practice-based understandings of regional health challenges. Note that a core principle of the DGHI Evidence Lab is to strengthen the evaluation capacity of our local and project counterparts on collaborative projects.
Our evaluations consider all research designs and propose the design that offers the optimal degree of causal inference and understanding. Illustrative designs include randomized controlled trials (individual or cluster), interrupted time series analysis, randomized multiple baseline surveys, quasi-experimental designs and mixed-methods research such as incorporating qualitative methods and direct observations.
Evidence to Impact
We build relationships and take the time to craft useful, data-driven recommendations and disseminate them to a wide range of stakeholders. Cognizant of the “research to practice” gap, we embrace strategies such as collaborative research, stakeholder engagement, advocacy, and communication that help link evidence to policies, programs and practice.
Building Local Capacity
Capacity building activities (e.g. training, building internal assets, collaboration from project inception to publication) within our local partnerships is a core principle of the DGHI Evidence Lab. Local capacity among program and research partners allows communities and countries to utilize improved research methods and/or evidence-based practices after external resources have ended.
Key Topical Expertise
As a university based lab we frequently engage with students to provide opportunities for new knowledge and skill development. We offer research assistant positions and regularly provide guest lectures for undergraduate and graduate courses on topics such as evaluation research methods and logic models. We also sponsor lunch seminars for students, faculty, and staff to engage with evaluation practitioners.